hetzel family

a couple of weeks ago i got to take some photos of a sweet trio of a family, sarndra, shane and little alex.

alex is such a sweet little one. he has amazingly wide eyes with gorgeous lashes and a very easy going nature. i am sure a lot of his temperament comes from having very loving and attentive parents. babies truly respond to having their needs met! it sounds simple but in reality it is so much harder than it looks. they made it look pretty easy though over at the hetzel's.

i arrived at their place mid morning on a sort of drizzly day. i was a bit nervous, as i usually am when i am going to take people's photos, also because it was my first time trying a really informal, unplanned style of capturing a family, inspired by the amazing tim coulson. his documentary style approach is the direction i'd like to head in, as that is how i like to photograph my own life and family. i think it is much more relaxing for all involved, much more real, and just plain beautiful to have a record of the everyday.

i ve had this sort of 'fake it 'til you make it' refrain running through my head as of late - i LOVE taking photos, but am a relative new-comer as far as things go. i honestly had only the foggiest idea of what an slr camera was a year ago. and i guess in the quest to be inspired into finding my own style i did a lot of photography blog reading and a lot of trolling online and it seemed as though the only way to make a living taking photos was to polish them. don't get me wrong, i still do love a polished photo - but if you know me, polished is not a word that describes me very well!

where am i going with this? ah. yes, i think i am much more of a fly by the seat of my pants type, rather than a chart the sun and tides and locations type. no pocketful of poses here. and i am relieved that i have come to this conclusion so that i know where to direct my effort in the future.

i loved having a peep into what sarndra and shane and alex get up to when his daddy has a sunday off from his chef-ing and were just banging around the house and neighbourhood. and i super enjoyed just taking photos and talking to these people who were really interesting to chat with rather than telling them where we were going to sit and trying to get them to act natural. goodness, it was so much easier capturing people acting natural when they were actually acting natural!

so, thank you to sarndra, shane and alex for letting me into your home 2 weeks ago to drink coffee and take pictures of your life. it truly was a pleasure.



  1. This family is so lucky: what precious images you have captured. Hsu-Yin, you might be learning how SLRs work, but you have a natural eye for perspective and composition. Your shots take my breath away.

  2. Amazing pics! I love these Hsu-Yin.
    Congrats Sarndra, Shane & Alex... I'm so happy for you that you have these beautiful moments captured forever.
    Danielle x

  3. Hello Hsu-Yin, I am Rhonda, Shane's mum. I just LOVE your photos of our family. What a talent you have. I think you have a bright future ahead if this is an example of your work. I am going to share your link on my blog today. I hope you don't mind.

    I had to smile at your seat of the pant comments, you could have been describing me too. :- )

    Thank you for your photos. They'll be cherished by us for many years.

    1. Thank you for your kind words and for taking the time to pop over and link to my blog - i have long been a huge fan of your blog, in fact it has been a part of the inspiration for us to move our family to my hometown in canada where we will be able to work less and afford more.

      Congratulations on your book! i had a sneak peek while at Shane and Sarndra's and it is beautiful :)

  4. Absolutely beautiful photos! I found your blog via Sarndra's blog, which I found via her mother-in-law's blog (which I've been reading for years). I feel like I've discovered a real treasure! I'm enjoying going back and looking at your past blog entries. I LOVE the little stories! I'm also a newcomer to photography. I didn't know what an slr was a year ago either, but now I have one and am learning as much as I can through blogs, photography podcasts, back issues of Australian Photography mags from the library and a terrific little photography group on facebook. I'm glad you've found your niche/style and I wish you all the best as you continue in your photography journey.
    Kendall (SnapWednesday on flikr)

    1. thank you kendall - that sounds exactly like me (especially the back issues of australian photography part :) i really liked looking at your photos on flickr - it looks like you've been on a technical fast-track! Have fun with your camera - the great thing about photography is that it is such a constant learning curve!

  5. Ok I Love These Pics!! I actually got a little emotional over them for some reason....you do such a beautiful job of capturing these little moments that happen in life. I am sooooo excited for you to come back home to capture these moments Thunder Bay style!!hahah....And after seeing these I can't wait for you to shoot at the wedding....seriously I am like more excited about you shooting than anything else other than getting married to my man! K keep snapping away! you are so freakin talented!
    Love Ar

    1. oh, stop will you! you're too generous with your comments. i m also SO excited about shooting your wedding! xo